When it comes to bold, talented women, Parisian-born Delphine Del Val is an expert. She is one. She knowns where to find them. And she runs one of New York’s most innovative talent agencies, POOL Creatives, that represents them exclusively.
Her impressive all-female talent roster reads like our ultimate list of collaborators and includes Ana Kras, Brianna Lance, Violette, Sarah Slutsky, and Gillian Zinser. Strong identities with a unique voice who are making waves in their respective fields, just like Delphine herself. To call them “influencers” would be a massive understatement.
We take a spin in Delphine Del Val’s shoes.
Hotel La Colombe D’Or in St Paul de Vence in the south of France
Delphine's babushkas by Maison Margiela, and Delphine's favourite place in Paris; Le Palais Royal.
Before POOL I represented photographers, a lot of them were men, a lot of my colleagues were men, a lot of art directors and creatives in advertising were men, and I felt a shift in me. It felt much more natural all of the sudden to discuss fashion, beauty, wellness, creating content, products and relationships with women versus with men. I felt more connected to women, found them much more collaborative and open. There was also a beginning of a movement and as much as I can’t say I started this as a feminist agency, I wanted to be a support to women.
What led to your decision to only represent women, and why is this important to you personally?
Is there a common essence that everyone on your roster shares and how would you describe it?
PoolGirls are women of talent(s), with a strong voice and/or mission. They have careers outside of social media. We are not an influencer’s agency, even though I think they actually influence a lot of women around them. PoolGirls use social media to promote their work, their art, their mission, and not just their physic. In today’s world where women fight to be heard as much as men, and still have to fight to show we are made of as much substance as men, it doesn’t make sense anymore to sell the message most influencer sell - be thin, wear expensive clothes, take photos of yourselves.
As I mentioned above, brands will have to align with women who share their values. It’s not enough anymore to sell clothes, pay a girl to wear them. That girl will sometimes wear a different brand four times a week. The audience now knows what’s organic and real, and what is paid. There is NOTHING shameful in being paid by a brand to partner if the brand and what you do make sense together, if you like the brand, if you share its values. Nobody needs more clothes, what we need is to shop better and support brands who are making a conscious effort to be environmentally friendly. We need our planet to survive. I think that exact fact will transform the way brands, influencers and their audiences collaborate.
The role of the influencer has changed significantly since you first started working with Garance Doré, how do you see this evolving into new territory in the future?
Creativity versus commerciality, how do you help your talent walk this line?Don’t say yes to a brand you don’t feel like supporting - rule number one. Our talent (most of them) are image makers and we usually make sure we have a say in the creative process to assist in protecting their unique creative vision.
Do you dress for specific purposes and moods, or have a fail-safe everyday uniform?I have a very simple style, jeans, blouses, blazer (when NYC weather allows), leather pants and jeans. Plus, big sweaters in the winter. Black ankle boots are what I own the most, heels are a lot lower now than a few years ago, I walk everywhere, I am always running around, shoes need to be comfortable. Clothes need to be comfortable. And I am an adult, I don’t show my belly button anymore.
How does craftsmanship and conscious consuming impact your fashion decisions?I don’t care so much about brands, I actually don’t like to wear anything that looks branded or recognizable. I want quality, QUA-LI-TY, for myself, but I also want to project that image of myself.
Delphine Del Val, strong values, strong ethic, hardworking, fun, woman of quality.
If you had to wear only one style of shoe every day for the rest of your life, what would it be and why?
Black ankle boots with a four-inch heel, or more and more flats. Easy with everything, go with everything I own.
Follow POOL Creatives here and Delphine here.
Delphine wears our New Classic boots.